NEW YORK (AP) – Mike Mussina outpitched former teammate Orlando Hernandez, and Alex Rodriguez hit a two-run homer that sent the New York Yankees to a 3-2 victory Monday night over the Chicago White Sox.

Mariano Rivera got his career-best 30th consecutive save, and the Yankees (60-50) moved 10 games over .500 for the first time this season. They improved to 2-32 when scoring three runs or fewer and won for the fourth time in five games overall.

It was New York’s first meeting this season against the AL Central-leading White Sox (72-39), who have the best record in the major leagues.

Hernandez (8-5) got a nice ovation before the game from Yankees fans who remember all he accomplished during two stints in pinstripes from 1998-04. The enigmatic right-hander with the deceptive delivery went 61-40 for New York and 9-3 with a 2.65 ERA in the postseason.

Mussina (11-7) struck out Jermaine Dye on his 122nd pitch with runners at second and third to end the sixth. The right-hander allowed two runs and eight hits, striking out seven and walking none.

Tanyon Sturtze and Tom Gordon each worked a scoreless inning, setting up Rivera for his 30th straight save since blowing his first two chances this season against Boston. He finished with a perfect ninth.

Derek Jeter led off the first inning with a long drive to left-center, but Aaron Rowand robbed him of a triple with a spectacular, diving catch at the edge of the warning track.

El Duque pumped his fist after the play, and Jeter tapped him on the thigh as he jogged past back toward the dugout.

Rowand, who crashed into the fence making a catch to help save two runs Sunday, followed that up with an over-the-shoulder catch at the wall in right-center on Robinson Cano’s shot.

Gary Sheffield then walked, and El Duque dropped down on a 3-1 pitch to Rodriguez, who sent it soaring over the left-field fence for his 32nd homer of the year and second in two games.

Tony Womack looped a double down the left-field line in the second inning, his second extra-base hit since May 13, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Jeter followed with an RBI groundout, making it 3-0.

El Duque gave up three runs and four hits in six innings.

Rowand hit an RBI double off the left-center fence in the fifth and scored on Juan Uribe’s sacrifice fly. But that was all the White Sox could muster on offense.

Notes: Yankees RHP Carl Pavano (shoulder) was scheduled for two days of tests with Dr. James Andrews in Alabama, and manager Joe Torre said the team probably would have more information Tuesday night. LHP Randy Johnson’s next start is in doubt because of back pain, though Torre said the Big Unit was feeling better. Johnson had an MRI that showed inflammation of the lumbar spine. He is day to day and will be re-evaluated Tuesday. … The Yankees reached nine games over .500 three times previously. … Sheffield went 0-for-2 with two walks, ending his 14-game hitting streak. He hit a rare foul ball out of Yankee Stadium in the eighth. … The White Sox fell to 36-17 on the road. … The Yankees have drawn 16 consecutive sellout crowds at home. … Hernandez dropped to 30-20 lifetime at Yankee Stadium.

AP-ES-08-08-05 2217EDT


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